Monday, August 6, 2012

Getting Down to Business

 First off, I'd like to apologize for taking so long to get back into blogging. My laptop took a crap and died on me and so now I'm stuck with trying to do things on my netbook. The netbook is rather impractical for all of the things that I want to do. Still, I'm soldiering on, mainly because I have good news as well. I am pleased to announce that I am no longer having bank issues, I've got my account set up and attached to Etsy, PayPal, etc. That also means that I've finally decided to stop the research spiral and went to get my sellers permit, I filed and published my DBA and I am now an official business. YAY!

I'm hoping to start adding things to my Etsy shop this very week. I would've begun a lot sooner but the one thing I'm trying to figure out is how to add tax to my listings. Who do I tax and at what rate? I understand that California is a whole mishmash of different tax rates for different counties and cities and from what I gather, in some cases it goes from neighborhood to neighborhood. So far, all the reading I have done hasn't clarified it for me. Makes me wish I lived in one of those places with no sales tax, or at least a straight tax throughout the state, if that even exists. Do I use the tax-rate for the area I'm sending things to or the rate for the area that I am shipping from. They really need to make these things simpler to understand, unless I'm just missing something. That could be the case. It's 106 degrees today (maybe more), my brain works optimally at around 30 degrees cooler and I am really fighting the urge to just nap all day. It wouldn't be a good sleep anyway so I'm not going to bother.

So this sales tax issue has me back in research mode. I don't want to under- or over-tax anyone and I want to be sure that any filing I do is correct. But I've decided that I'll balance it out with actual work. I've been trying to transform the small space I have at my disposal into an office that works for me. So far it's looking pretty good and I know once I have everything in place, running the business should be peachy... I hope.


  1. In many places you only have to collect sales tax for online sales if you have a physical storefront in the same state as the buyer (this is why amazon only charges sales tax in some states). You might want to contact your local chamber of commerce to see if they can clarify for your location.

  2. Yes, computers can be such a pain. I can't help with the tax question. Perhaps you can ask on an Etsy group?

    1. I've been reading through Etsy groups for other stuff. I'm sure I need to find one that's for California sellers.

  3. So I called the BOE and I was told that for internet sales within California, I apply the tax rate to where the item will ship to. With all the varied district tax rates in CA, it's going to be complicated and a lot of work. This is what I signed up for so I have to do it.

  4. I sold in California, and I used my local tax rate for those in my county, and a global CA tax rate for every other county. I don't remember what it was. There's no way you can keep track of all the counties. Just write your local Franchise Tax Board and get an answer in writing from them. I think you also have to pay taxes on shipping fees you receive, which is very lame.

    And congratulations on starting your own business. Self-employment is a blast! I've just started my fifth business.